Sunday, January 16

Best and Worst of 2010 - Part I

I've been having a lot of fun reading everyone's end of the year posts. It's always interesting to see everyone's numbers and their favorite reads of the year :) Actually, Ames, Chantal and I did write one for 2008, but decided against for 2009. Either we were too busy or too lazy. Hmmm, actually probably both LOL. (Ames here, I know I was too lazy haha!) However, I thought it'd be fun to come up with a Best and Worst of post for 2010 :) First, like I said, it's always interesting and a good topic of discussion, but it'll help to revive Breezing Through and put us back on the right track :)

In order not to overload you, we've decided to split our Best and Worst of 2010 in many parts. That way, we can keep it short, but also really focus on the different categories :) So make sure to come back every day this week to find out what were our favorite and disappointing reads, series and authors of the year.

Today, we're starting with the two very popular romance genres: Historical and Contemporary. For each genre, we've listed our Top 3 reads of the year along with our Worst/Disappointing read.



1. Devil's Cub by Georgette Heyer
2. Love in the Afternoon by Lisa Kleypas
3. Duke of Shadows by Meredith Duran (I didn't review this one but I loved it!)

Worst/Disappointing - I have a few disappointing books in this category: Never a Bride by Amelia Grey, The Conquest by Jude Deveraux and All Night With a Rogue by Alexandra Hawkins


1. The Stranger I Married by Sylvia Day
2. Almost Heaven by Judith McNaught
3. Isabella's Scandalous Marriage by Jennifer Ashley

Worst/Disappointing - All Night with a Rogue by Alexandra Hawkins


1. Passions of a Wicked Earl by Lorraine Heath
2. Love in the Afternoon by Lisa Kleypas
3. His Sinful Secret by Emma Wildes

Worst/Disappointing - Hmmm, I'm going to have to agree with the both of you that All Night with a Rogue didn't do much for me. Another disappointing read was A Christmas Waltz by Jane Goodger. I'm so used to her historical books being so poignant that this one didn't really live up to her previous works. Also, Suzanne Enoch and Victoria Alexander are two historical authors that I adore, but their current series The Adventurers' Club and The Harrington series respectively, are not doing much for me either.



Looking back over my books, I didn't read a lot of contemporary romance...I had a lot of B reads in this category but here are my A reads. :)

1. Something About You by Julie James
2. All I Ever Wanted by Kristan Higgins
3. The Search by Nora Roberts

Worst/Disappointing - I had one DNF for contemporary romance and that was Dangerous by Diana Palmer.


1. Start Me Up by Victoria Dahl
2. Slow Heat by Jill Shalvis
3. The Girl Most Likely To... by Susan Donovan

Worst/Disappointing - Dear EFFING John by Nicholas Sparks
...I got a lot of flack for not liking this book so I just wanna put out there that I think NS is an AMAZING author I just can't read his sad stuff all the time. I read to be happy! lol Like I told everyone though, I wanted to rip this book in half...and when the ending of the movie differed from the book I SERIOUSLY stood up in the theater during the show and woot'ed! lol


My Top 3 for this category is a bit weird. Oh, the three books are definitively my top reads, but the order doesn't follow the grades I gave them ^_^; It just didn't feel right, so I put them the way I thought felt right.

1. Almost Perfect by Susan Mallery
2. The Search by Nora Roberts
3. Somewhere Along the Way by Jodi Thomas

Worst/Disappointing - Mad, Bad and Blond by Cathie Linz. This author is just not doing it for me; however, her covers and blurbs always make me pick up her books. Good marketing, I guess :P Two other books that were real bummers for me were Hot Finish by Erin McCarthy and Lois Lane Tells All by Karen Hawkins. I was really looking forward to Suzanne and Ryder's story, but the story of Hot Finish did not do justice to these two characters. As for Lois Lane Tells All, it was simply bland and did not live up to the first book of the series, Talk of the Town, which was quite fun.

Nath: Surprisingly, considering how much I love contemporary romance, choosing a Top 3 was difficult. There wasn't really any books this year that made me go "Wow" or made me urge other people to read.

Ames: I have to second that statement. I read too many other genres to really focus on contemp romance in 2010. Hopefully that will change in 2011.

Monroe: At least yall can remember everything you've on the other hand never can...but Im keeping better track now (plus I have you two to remind me ;p). I read a ton of paranormal this past year so I hope to read more contemps AND historicals...they always seem to fall off my radar when paras are in the picture! ;)

Nath: LOL, Monroe, I think it's because you're in your paranormal phase... it'll fade, unfortunately ^_^;

I do hope there will more contemporary romances in 2011, and better ones too! I think the genre needs to be invigorated and priorities, re-focused. Focus on the characters and the romances and try to avoid mysteries, intrigues and murders. Oh oh, Ames... what does that make The Search? Contemporary romance or romantic suspense?!?

Ames: I know it's labeled everywhere as Rom Suspense but that aspect of The Search seemed kind of minimal compared to everything else that went on in this book. So I'm putting it there, because I said so. LOL

Nath: LOL, well looking back at my tag, I labeled The Search as contemporary too. In any case, if it wasn't The Search out there, it'd be another NR :) In my opinion, NR deserves to be in my Top 3 for the numbers of books she wrote and the quality of them LOL.

Monroe: Nath, I'm upset you didn't like Hot Finish by Erin McCarthy! I loved that book! ;p lol But then again you and I always seem to differ on our taste...and also Im the softy in the group!Im now curious as to how Ill like Susan Mallery's Almost Perfect book lol I just bought the first 3 books.

Nath: LOL, we do seem to have different tastes, Monroe. Perhaps it's because you're just starting to read romances... As for Hot Finish, well I think it was a matter of expectations. The book was definitively very sexy, but the conflict...


What about you? What were your favorites and duds? Anyone with similar Top 3?


Hilcia said...

Oh hey! The new look at BT rocks ladies!

I'm loving this post. I do share a couple of your favorites, or maybe one, lol:Love in the Afternoon, made it to my list of top favorites. :) I did enjoy The Search a lot, but it didn't make it to my top reads for the year. BTW, I included it in my CR numbers too.

As a matter of fact none of the new released contemporaries I read made it. :( I also hope 2011 is a better year for that category.

As far as disappointments? High expectations made Happy Ever After by NR, although not a total loss, a disappointment in the CR category, and from the HR new releases, Lady Isabella's Scandalous Marriage by Jennifer Ashley.

Tabitha said...

I'm not a great big fan of historicals but I would agree that Passions of a Wicked Earl by Lorraine Heath was a pretty darn good read. Also enjoyed Love in the Afternoon by Lisa Kleypas. But I can't think of a third historical. Come to think of it, I don't think I read a lot of historicals this year. Oops! I wouldn't say this was a worst read but Ten Things I Love About You was a disappointing read for me considering how much I love JQ's writing.

As for contemps, I very much enjoyed Homecoming by Elizabeth Jennings and Butterfly Tattoo by Deidre Knight. The 3rd would be between The Search by Nora Roberts and Exclusively Yours by Shannon Stacey. The ending for Stacey's book wasn't perfect but I remember all the chuckles and telling Nath how much I enjoyed it!

Disappointing read in contemp would have to be The Next Best Thing by Kristan Higgans...or can I say Hot Finish by Erin McCarthy even though I didn't finish the book? I tried several times and just couldn't get past the first chapter, err, pages. Lol.

nath said...

Hilcia - Thanks Hils :) Happy you like it!

Hmmm, if I was to choose my top books all genres confounded, I'm not sure The Search would make it to the top. However, in contemporary, yes :)

Awww, sorry to hear about Happy Ever After. I do understand what you mean. I was hoping for more as well, but still, it was a solid book.

Glad we have Love in the Afternoon in common :) Many seemed to prefer Leo's book... but me and Ames, it's all about Beatrix :)

Tabitha - If you want to read more historicals, Tabs, I say Emma Wildes. I think you would enjoy her a lot :) and I'm glad you agree with my choices! LOL.

I hear you on Ten Things I Love About You. Far from being Ms Quinn's best ^_^; However, I feel that if you put it up, you'll get lynched my her fans LOL. You know though, I'm really looking forward to her new series with the Smythe-Smith girls :)

Aha, someone else who consider The Search contemp :) I'm glad. I really need to read Butterfly Tattoo. Everyone raves about that book...

LOL, if you can't finish a book, it might say something. I get you on The Next Best Thing. I didn't love it either, but I think when it comes to this book, it's more about our reading tastes, than the overall execution of the book. That's why I didn't put it up there.